NASCAR News: First-time winners a rarity at Daytona; the late Tiny Lund was the first

Tiny Lund and son, Chris Lund, taken late 1972 or early 1973. Submitted by Chris Lund, CC BY-SA 2.5, https commons.wikimedia

First-time winners are rare in the Daytona 500

Though it is rare, it still happens from time-to-time.

Of the 62 Daytona 500 races, only seven times has a driver posted his career-first NASCAR Cup Series victory with a win in the event; the most recent to accomplish the feat was Trevor Bayne in 2011.

Driver Seasons

Tiny Lund 1963

Mario Andretti 1967

Pete Hamilton 1970

Derrike Cope 1990

Sterling Marlin 1994

Michael Waltrip 2001

Trevor Bayne 2011

Derrike Cope, won his first Cup Series race in the 1990 Daytona 500, and he will be competing this weekend in the Rick Ware Racing No. 15. 

Three other drivers posted their career-first victory in (points-paying) qualifying races at Daytona: Johnny Rutherford (1963), Bobby Isaac (1964) and Earl Balmer (1966).

This weekend, 20 different drivers entered in this season’s Daytona 500 are still looking for their first NASCAR Cup Series victory.